Historical reality vs. “What I know is true”

The following is from another forum where I post on a near daily basis. – News Forum, The Ledger

A gentleman who goes by the nym “Bugle” is a self-proclaimed Democrat posting opinions that mirror the Republican Party line. He has stated that he holds a PhD from the University of Florida but has not said in what field of study. Also has said he is a 20 year veteran of the American military, now retired with a small cattle ranch in central Florida.

Bugle’s original post

Slamb ,Sisters and others, Sadly such deluded thinking ,as yours ,has often led to tragedy. Many millions died in Europe because Chamberlain held similar views. Many Jewish(and other peoples) were slaughtered because ,early on, the leaders of the world “reasoned” with Hitler…that’s probably why Israel is so vigalant today. For most of the past century, most of the Eastern Europe lived under tyranical Communism because some tried to “talk Stalin aka Uncle Joe” into being a good guy. Many,many thousands of Cuban,Vietnamese,Eastern Europeans,Africans and others have lost their freedom and their lives because tyrants and madmen were allowed to gain the upper hand. Genocide and mass killings in Darfur,Rwanda,Bosnia and brutal regimes still exist in our times in goodly numbers. What troubles me most, is that the saftey and security of all of us is being put at risk by the naive and (no offense intended) *****ic thinking of deluded people. One can not, reason with rabid dogs or with bloody fanatics or power-seeking despots…to think otherwise ignores all of human history. In a world of public beheadings and mutillations, horrible suppression of women,murderous killing of innocents, and nuclear proliferation among rouge states …it seems like lunacy that anyone (other than fools or traitors) can actually entertain ideas that a strong defensive posture and homeland security measures are not essential. I fear your naive ideas even more than enemies that confront our nation….you are probably the greater threat. If the naive and deluded thinking of the left causes their side of the boat to sink… we all go down together.

All typos, spelling errors and the censoring of “idiotic” are in the original

My reply:
Bugle, you are showing your ignorance of history. You wrote, “Many millions died in Europe because Chamberlain held similar views.” and I have to disagree. It is your opinion that PM Neville Chamberlain held such views but his diaries and multiple histories of the period would indicate otherwise. By the late 1930s, Hitler’s aggressiveness was well known but owing to the trauma of WWI, the vast majority of people in the British Empire were not willing to go to war again. There were protests in Great Britain over increased taxation that was being used to build up England’s defences. By 1938, FIFTY PERCENT of revenues were going to the military. When Chamberlain went to Berlin in Sept 1938, he had recently received from the head of the C I D (Committee of Imperial Defence) that stated

“From the military point of view, time is in our favour…if war with Germany has to come, it would be better to fight her in say 6-12 months’ time than to accept the present challenge”

The Munich Accords were wildly popular in the Empire at the time, it wasn’t Chamberlain who wasn’t aware of the nature of the beast but the body politic, the public that did not want another war like the previous one.

Have you ever walked thru small villages in England or western Europe? They all have memorials to their WWI dead. You look at those with the names listed and just think about it. Maybe the village is only a couple thousand population and yet there may be 50 or 100 names there in the stone. An entire generation of young men was destroyed in four years – that is perhaps the major reason political leaders like Chamberlain were willing to make efforts to slow down but not attack Germany. If he had attempted a pre-emptive attack against Germany in Dec 1938, not that he could have because he didn’t have an airforce or an army strong enough, he would have been dragged out of his offices and lynched. Winston Churchill understood Chamberlain’s value as a political leader and kept him in government after Churchill became Prime Minister in 1940.

Bugle wrote, “For most of the past century, most of the Eastern Europe lived under tyranical Communism because some tried to “talk Stalin aka Uncle Joe into being a good guy.” To be petty I will start by saying 40 years is not “most of the past century”. I would also contend that Soviet Russia was able to take over most of Eastern Europe because the allied democratic nations were tired of fighting and wanted to concentrate on repairing their own countries in preference to starting another war after seven years of fighting; not because they tried to “talk” Stalin into being reasonable. In 1945, Soviet troops already occupied the nations that were to fall behind the ‘Iron Curtain’, removing those soldiers would have demanded an effort perhaps larger than that required to topple Hitler and Mussolini and Tojo. The world wasn’t capable at that time.

“Genocide and mass killings in Darfur,Rwanda,Bosnia and brutal regimes still exist in our times in goodly numbers. ” Of course bloody-minded psychopaths still exist but to bring up the three nations that you name poses a bit of a quandary for one who calls himself ‘conservative’ for it has been ‘librul’ activists who have lobbied most strongly for some type of action to take place in those nations. It was the neo-conservative President Clinton who failed to respond in Rwanda, perhaps because of the beating he had recently received in Congress and the media over the failures of the Somalia intervention (ordered by President George H W Bush) but it was the same President Clinton who ordered US forces -finally – to go into Bosnia despite Republican efforts to stop him. Neither Clinton or Pres George W Bush did anything to lessen or stop the atrocities in Darfur. All too many have noted that the region has nothing to offer to the US, no natural resources – unlike Iraq. So it has been the dreaded ‘Hollywood elites’s who have made pilgrimage to Darfur, using their celebrity to bring attention to the horrors being inflicted upon the people of southern Sudan.

And finally is the statement, “it seems like lunacy that anyone (other than fools or traitors) can actually entertain ideas that a strong defensive posture and homeland security measures are not essential. ” Why yes it does seem like lunacy when using your definitions of the terms “strong defensive posture” and “homeland security measures” would seem to include a willingness to abrogate several provisions of the Constitution of the United States, to allow for torture in violation not only of international accords (signed and ratified by the US, making them US law) but also multiple items in Federal laws. In fact, I would, and many others also, would argue that the policies of the past administration have not only lessened the security of Americans in their homes and lives but have demonstrably enhanced the dangers offered by groups around the world.

Many of those who today are attacking US and allied interests around the world are not ‘rabid dogs’ but are often motivated by feelings of nationalism, patriotism and religious fervour as strong an any an American may hold. Unfortunately, the truth is that any situation similar to what we live in today will attract humans who are, to define it properly, NUTS. If it can happen in the well-trained, highly-disciplined forces of the western world, then we must accept the fact that psychotic killers will be attracted to groups that will enable their blood-thirst. Then of course, amoral leaders who wouldn’t perform such atrocities themselves will use the ‘rabid dogs’. It is seldom that truly crazy people attain leadership and sometimes to achieve stability, we have to deal with those leaders who have used the crazies. That is the reality of the world we inhabit. It is not being naive to do so; what is naive is to think that your or my or anyone’s point of view is the only ‘safe’ way to behave.

Do you know why Osama bin Laden wanted to attack the US? It wasn’t because he “hated” freedom and democracy. In his earliest writings, after conversion to his rather warped style of Islam, he had two primary complaints: ONE – US military forces based in his ‘Holy Land’ and TWO – the apparent refusal of the US to listen to Arab complaints about Israel. Since then, of course he has created many more excuses for himself and his followers.

To reiterate, to be liberal is not to be naive. I would argue instead that the liberal prefers reality and knowledge-based actions not actions based on some macho ideal of manhood. “We’ll show ’em, who’s the real top dog!” “My way or the highway!” “You’re with us or aginst us!” Those ideas stopped working at about the high-school level. A willingness to talk to your enemies is often seen as weakness by those (supposedly) on your own side who are enamoured of the John Wayne image of America. Yes, we are the biggest dog in the pound. Yes, the US can pound the crap out of everyone. So, I ask, why such fear that so many who call themselves conservative, are apparently willing to destroy that which they claim they are defending when they advocate ‘pre-emptive invasion’, carpet-bombing a nation, total economic blockade, etc.? Why are they so unsure of themselves, and seemingly of this nation’s capabilities, that they refuse to talk to opponents? Why has paranoia induced them to call for torture and extra-judicial executions of suspects? What overwhelming power in the world makes them willing to live with a President who preferred dictatorship to democracy? Guess we’re lucky that he really doesn’t care to make a serious effort at any job he’s ever had.

You say you have a PhD. I have to ask – Weren’t you required to do research and think critically about your subjects before making statements in your field of study?

and his reply, which has made me mad enough to put him on “Ignore”

I choose not to join you in a trip down “Revisionism Road” and quibbling about minor little factoids while missing the obvious dangers presented by being weak or perceived as weak in a dangerous world. If you to choose to suspend reality and dwell in a world of leftist fantasy (even fantasy that you think has some “selected” factual support)….I do not choose to join you there. There are those around that deny that the Holicaust occurred and (like you) they even provide supporting facts in a effort to deceive. Yes,I’ve been to Europe and to Asia and I’ve seen the thousands of graves of those killed fighting despotism and the graves of innocent civilians as well….I have also seen the disasterous outcome that befell people left unprotected from the horrors of ruthless enemies. I stand by my previous posting and I suggest that it is you (not I) that are displaying ignorance in this matter.

Another commenter noted that it “Took you long enough” to ignore the gentleman who calls himself Bugle. We’ll see what his future responses might be but I think I’ll not be replying.

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